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2023/05/11      |  Written By:  Colonel P Naidu   |   Province:  Eastern Cape

Sarah Baartman District 9 May 2023:  A 43-year-old truck driver was arrested in Middleburg soon after he allegedly raped a hitchhiker after picking her up  from Kariega. It is alleged that on Monday, 8/05 at about 15:40, the 23 year old woman was in the truck with other passengers and when the truck driver offloaded the other passengers in Jansenville, she continued her ride alone with him in the truck. 

About 30km from Graaff-Reinet on the Jansenville road at a resting spot, he threatened the woman with a firearm and raped her. She was dropped off in Graaff-Reinet where she alerted police. Swift follow up investigation by SAPS Graaff-Reinet Operational Command Centre(OCC) and Vispol members, led to the speedy arrest of the truck driver in Middleburg. The driver was arrested whilst on route to Colesberg. He was detained on a charge of rape.

Sarah Baartman District Commissioner, Maj Gen Zolani Xawuka commended the police members for their immediate action and apprehension of the suspect. ‘The SAPS would like to warn women of the dangers of hitchhiking as they can easily fall prey to robberies, rape, human trafficking or even murder. The ride is not always free. Hitchhiking can be dangerous  either for the driver who stops to pick up strangers as there is a possibility that he/she can be hijacked of their vehicle and belongings while at the same time hitchhiking  just for a lift can also pose a danger as in this case. Never hitchhike as this places your safety in danger,’ added Maj Gen Xawuka.